Public Hearing To Be Announced for Construction of Car Wash Facility at Nordic Nursery Location in Newbury Park

Sarah R. pointed out via the CVG Facebook Page this weekend that there's a City of Thousand Oaks Public Hearing sign in front of Nordic Nursery, 1313 Newbury Road in Newbury Park. 

The sign announces a TBA public hearing on a proposed application to allow encroachment within the protected zones of on-site oak trees and the removal of two off-site oak trees in conjunction with the construction of a drive-thru car wash facility.

Well that's a bummer. Nordic Nursery has operated in the Conejo Valley since 1979. www.nordicnursery.com

The 101/23 Interchange Improvement Project in Thousand Oaks Starting Soon

The City of Thousand Oaks, Caltrans and Ventura County Transportation Commission are initiating the US Highway 101/State Route 23 Interchange Improvement Project soon!

The 101/23 interchange is one of the most congested freeway segments in Ventura County during peak travel periods. The project will widen the freeway and some of the existing connectors and ramps. Specifically, the project will:

  • Add a lane to the southbound 23 to northbound 101 connector and southbound 23 to southbound 101 connector.
  • Add a lane to the northbound and southbound US 101 freeway at various locations between the Los Angeles/Ventura County line and Moorpark Road.
  • Widen three bridges (northbound side only) at Hampshire Road, Conejo School Road and Moorpark Road. Construct soundwalls between Hampshire Road and Conejo School Road on  northbound side of 101 and between Manzanita Lane and Hampshire Road on the southbound side of the 101 freeway.
  • Realign Moorpark Road northbound onramp and offramp. The 101 northbound onramp will be reconstructed to include an additional lane. The Moorpark Road undercrossing will be widened.
  • The southbound Westlake Blvd onramp will be reconstructed to add an additional lane. The 101 will be restriped in the vicinity of Westlake Blvd to provide five mixed flow lanes.

The project is expected to be completed in early 2016 and is anticipated to relieve traffic issues at the interchange, improve traffic safety and operations at the interchange, improve local traffic flow and commutes and enhance air quality.

Projected closures of US 101/SR-23 connectors, surface streets and on/offramps will take place intermittently throughout the two-year project. Closures will take place during off-peak hours whenever possible.

To learn more about specific closures and project updates, visit the project website on the City of Thousand Oaks website at www.toaks.org/10123. You can also sign up for email updates at that link.

WOULD YOU LIKE TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THIS PROJECT!?

Residents are invited to attend a community meeting to learn about the upcoming improvements, general construction schedule and closures. Caltrans and City of Thousand Oaks staff as well as the project designer will be on hand to answer questions on Wednesday, February 5th from 6-8PM at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza, Founders Room, 2100 Thousand Oaks Boulevard, Thousand Oaks.

Highlights of 101/23 Interchange Project Improvements (Courtesy of Caltrans). Click image for link to larger image on Caltrans website.Click image for larger image on Caltrans website.

Additional Information About Proposed Westlake Village In-N-Out Restaurant

Proposed In-N-Out at The Shoppes at Westlake Village (Image courtesy of City of Westlake Villlage)

The City of Westlake Village has published a video highlighting information about the proposed In-N-Out Burger that will be covered at a December 21 Public Hearing. Featured in a Q&A session are City Manager Ray Taylor and City Planning Director Scott Wolfe. The video is embedded below but here is a summary of points covered:

  • Construction of The Shoppes at Westlake Village is moving along, with infrastructure (water/sewer) and paving in place and building foundations and initial framing underway. The target date for opening of the Target store is July 27, 2014 (updated July 2014).
  • The proposed In-N-Out Burger is planned for the west end of The Shoppes development up against the existing Bank of America building.
  • The proposed In-N-Out lies on about a one acre plot, with the restaurant itself occupying about 3,700 sq ft., which is a typical size for an In-N-Out.
  • The architecture of the In-N-Out will match that of the rest of The Shoppes, including stonework, natural tile and other "Older European" treatments. It will thus have a different look than a typical In-N-Out.
  • In-N-Out originally proposed one bronze colored In-N-Out sign facing the 101 Freeway, with two others in the standard In-N-Out corporate color scheme. Working with the City, the plan has been changed such that all three signs are proposed to be bronze to match the coloring of other stores at The Shoppes.
  • The City wanted to make sure there was adequate queueing space for drive-thru traffic. Wolfe indicates typical fast food restaurants have space for 7 to 9 cars and typical In-N-Outs accomodate 15 cars. The City worked with In-N-Out to accomodate in excess of 20 cars for this particular In-N-Out Burger!
  • The City is satisfied that In-N-Out and The Shoppes have adequate walls and landscaping planned to ensure car headlights in the parking and queueing areas do not impact drivers on the 101 Freeway.
  • In-N-Out has proposed store hours of 10:30am 7 days a week, closing at 1am Sunday through Thursday and 1:30am Friday/Saturday. Wolfe indicates this is subject to City Council review.

For more information about the proposed In-N-Out restaurant in Westlake Village, visit www.wlv.org/index.aspx?NID=351.

Proposed Westlake Village In-N-Out Burger Topic of Public Hearing on December 11th

PUBLIC HEARING SCHEDULED ON PROPOSED IN-N-OUT RESTAURANT IN WESTLAKE VILLAGE

After several months of discussions and a number of plan revisions, In-N-Out Burger has filed an application to construct and operate a drive-thru restaurant on Russell Ranch Road along the 101 Freeway (within the Shoppes at Westlake Village retail center).

This application is scheduled to be discussed at a public hearing at the regular City Council meeting on December 11, 2013, 6:30PM.

In-N-Out Burger is proposing to occupy a freestanding building at the west end of the Shoppes at Westlake Village, which is to be anchored by Target. The Shoppes is anticipated to open in Summer 2014. The City Council’s Planning Area C Ad-hoc Committee and staff have carefully reviewed building and design plans and requested a number of changes to ensure that the building reflects the same architectural detail and standards as the rest of the Shoppes center including stonework, roofing tile, and window treatments. Additionally, at the Committee’s request, signs facing the freeway will be halo-lit and bronze colored, rather than the traditional In-N-Out corporate colors, to match the freeway oriented signage for the rest of the center.

(Source: City of Westlake Village)

In-N-Out Burger currently has 292 locations in five states, including 218 in California as well as locations in Arizona, Nevada, Texas and Utah. You'd think that with all the excitement about In-N-Out Burger that they'd have more locations by now! But this family chain, opened originally in Baldwin Park in 1948, is taking its sweet time!

Other local Ventura County area In-N-Out locations in Newbury Park (only about 8 miles away from this new proposed Westlake Village location), Camarillo, Oxnard, Ventura, Moorpark, Simi Valley, Woodland Hills and Goleta. In May 2011 an Agoura Hills In-N-Out Burger location was under consideration but the plans were withdrawn.

Learn more at www.in-n-out.com. For updates, stay tuned here or visit the City of Westlake Village website at www.wlv.org.


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Is a Walmart Store Coming to Camarillo?

Hmm, perhaps we'll be seeing Walmart in Camarillo. Not certain, but there's a sign, literally, that might indicate something is in the works.

WalmartCamNotice.jpg

This sign is posted on the window of the long-vacant Linens and Things that was located in the Camarillo Town Shopping Center at 275 W. Ventura Boulevard.

According to the California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control website, Walmart Stores Inc. applied for a license to sell beer, wine and distilled spirits for consumption off premises. This could indicate Walmart may be interested in opening a store at that location.

But wait, this location is about 36,000 sq ft, a small fraction of the size of a typical Walmart Discount Store or Supercenter. Hmm, well Walmart does have nearly 170 Walmart Neighborhood Markets that according to Walmart "offer a quick and convenient shopping experience for customers who need groceries, pharmaceuticals, and general merchandise all at our famous Every Day Low Prices." The typical store size is 42,000 sq ft.

Would be great to see that space filled with something permanent! Let's wait and see. In the meantime, there are still Walmart stores in Oxnard (2001 N. Rose Avenue) and Simi Valley (255 Cochran Street).

WalmartCamMarketPoss.jpg

This is the old "Linens and Things" site in question, sandwiched between Ross and Target on the east and Staples and Sports Authority on the west.

Camarillo Drive-Thru Chick-fil-A Decision to Be Appealed at City Council Meeting Tonight

Update 11/3/11: City Council upheld the Planning Commission's denial of a Chick-fil-A drive-thru at the Camarillo Premium Outlets. Hey Chick-fil-A, we love ya! How about another location? Maybe Thousand Oaks!? :>

At a September 6, 2011 Camarillo Planning Commission meeting, Chick-fil-A was denied the approval to build a 4,670 sq ft drive-through location at The Promenade section of the Camarillo Premium Outlets. Although a number of attendees supported the Chick-fil-a at the meeting, including representatives from the Camarillo and Oxnard Chambers of Commerce and others in the community, the Planning Commission voted against the proposal by a 3 to 2 margin.

The primary reason for rejecting the application was that a The Promenade is not consistent with the specific plan for the area and is not a good fit for the location. Representatives from the adjacent Johnny Rockets were not in favor for the drive-thru because of concerns of auto exhaust fumes impacting diners in the outdoor patio area of their restaurant as well as potential traffic issues.

The decision was appealed and is being presented to the Camarillo City Council tonight. City Council will be asked to reaffirm the Planning Commission's denial by the city's Community Planning Department. Stop by if you are "hungering" for action. Most people I know love Chick-fil-A, including my family, and would love more locations other than the existing one in Oxnard. But I can see the potential concern for a drive-thru in that particular location.

Hooters Administrative Public Hearing in Thousand Oaks on Thursday, September 15th

Update from VC Star on 9/20/11: Thousand Oaks resident Don Hunn, 77, has paid $1,130 to file an appeal of the decision to allow a full bar at the new Hooters. This is outstanding news for local newspapers as it provides continued comedy material.

Update from the VC Star on 9/16/11: Operators granted full bar. The decision can be appealed to the City Planning Commission within 10 calendar days and a fee of $1100. Over 60 people attended the meeting and it lasted 3 hours. 39 people spoke against the application, 12 spoke in favor of it. Ah yes, no doubt this is not the last we've heard of this "issue."

Hooters_logo.jpg

Today, the City of Thousand Oaks Community Development Department mailed a Notice of Admininstrative Public Hearing to all property owners located within 500 feet of the proposed Hooters in the Janss Marketplace parking lot, 401 N. Moorpark Road (corner of Moorpark Road and Brazil Street).

VacantHooters.jpg

The persistently vacant ex-Sizzlers, ex-Fuddruckers location proposed for Hooters. The hearing will be held on Thursday, September 15th at 3 p.m. at City Council Chambers, 2nd Floor, 2100 Thousand Oaks Boulevard. Anyone is allowed to attend and be heard on the following matter:

Applicant: Thousand Oaks Wings, LLC

 Sign on Potential Future Hooters Location Door. TOW Stands for Thousand Oaks Wings

Sign on Potential Future Hooters Location Door. TOW Stands for Thousand Oaks Wings

Request: To modify the existing special use perrmit condition limiting on-site sale and consumption of beer and wine only to allow sale and consumption of all alcoholic beverages in conjunction with the operation of a restaurant.

This should be interesting, based on the concerns voiced by some local residents. If you're looking for some excitement on September 15th, this could be the place to be (in close competition with the 65 cent funnel cake sticks offered up by Hot Dog on a Stick on September 15th!!).

The sole purpose of the hearing is to address whether the applicant shall be allowed to have a full bar and if that is allowable under City code. The purpose of the meeting is NOT to address whether or not a Hooters should be "allowed" there in the first place. It may be entertaining watching how the the City manages to keep the scope of the meeting within its stated purpose.

Expect plenty of news coverage. For further information about the request, contact the City of Thousand Oaks.

The majority of Hooters restaurants have full bars, including the following locations that are closest to Thousand Oaks: Santa Monica, Hollywood, Burbank, Downtown Los Angeles, Anaheim, Oceanside and West Covina.

If for whatever reason we don't get our Hooters in Thousand Oaks, I'd be o.k. if they bring back Sizzler.

In-N-Out Burger May Be Coming to Agoura Hills!

FOLLOW-UP: City planners indicated that In-N-Out withdrew their application and it never went to the Planning Commission. That's not what a hamburger's all about, but so be it.

If all goes well on at the City of Agoura Hills Planning Commission hearing this Thursday night, May 19th, a new In-N-Out Burger may be coming to 28898 Canwood Street!

The new In-N-Out is proposed for a 2.73 acre parcel with 1,000 feet of frontage along Canwood and the 101 Freeway. The proposed project would include removal of 3 of the 4 existing billboards on the site and construction of a one-story, 3,654 square-foot restaurant building with a drive-through lane, trash enclosure, and outdoor dining patio. The site would have 100 parking spaces, including 5 handicapped spots.

Mock up from the Initial Study and Draft Mitigated Negative Declaration report.

There is a 104 page Initial Study and Mitigated Negative Declaration report on this project available on the City of Agoura Hills website at www.ci.agoura-hills.ca.us.  Basically the report goes through all the types of potential environmental impacts of the project and concludes that any "negative" impacts can be mitigated in various ways. For example, scenic resources:

The project site is located north of the U.S. 101 Freeway and south of Canwood Street within the City of Agoura Hills. The Agoura Hills General Plan (2010) identifies several scenic resources in the City and identifies road segments that offer views of the scenic resources.

The following scenic resources are identified in the General Plan:

  • Ladyface Mountain – located south of the U.S. 101 Freeway, between Kanan Road and the western City limits on the southern border of Agoura Hills;
  • Strawberry Hill – located north of Canwood Street and south of Thousand Oaks Boulevard, just east of Forest Cove Park;
  • Morrison Ranch Hills, the Morrison Ranch Hills – located north of Thousand Oaks Boulevard, generally between Reyes Adobe Road and Kanan Road;
  • Palo Comado Hills – located in the northeastern corner of the City
  • Simi Hills – the hills that border the City on the north

The report indicated there would be no significant impact of the project on the above.

Stay tuned! On a related note, I discovered that the In-N-Out Burger Real Estate and Development Department 13502 Hamburger Lane in Baldwin Park. What a great street name!